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Downtown Bristol Blog

Southern Churn — $5,000 Winner Announced for the Downtown Bristol Entrepreneur's Prize Competition

Last year, Believe in Bristol introduced the Downtown Bristol Entrepreneur’s Prize and our first winner, Bristol Brewery, is scheduled to open this Spring. This year, the prize goes to Southern Churn, a new business started by long time downtown entrepreneur Karen Hester, who also owns Cranberry Lane. The Downtown Bristol Entrepreneur’s Prize, is designed to provide $5,000 in reimbursement grant funds for a qualifying new and expanding downtown business to help ensure their long-term success.

Songs and Stories from A. P. Carter's Martin Guitar Dale Jett & Wayne Henderson Reveal an Instrument's Journey at The Birthplace of Country Music Museum

The Birthplace of Country Music Museum (BCMM) will host Songs and Stories from A. P. Carter’s Martin Guitar with Dale Jett and Wayne Henderson inside the Performance Theater on Friday, February 6, 2015 at 7:00 p.m.

"In the late 1930s, A. P. Carter bought a Martin guitar in a south Texas pawn shop to play on border radio," said BCMM curator of education outreach, Thomas Richardson. "The 1936 OOO-28 was a fancy guitar at the time, but as it was only a few years old, there was no way to know it would later be considered one of the finest examples of craftsmanship from Martin’s golden age. That guitar was later handed down to A. P.’s grandson Dale Jett. When a guitar of this caliber needs repair, Jett trusts friend and renowned luthier Wayne Henderson to do the job."

2015 Sweets for the Sweet Cupcake Fundraiser

Nothing says "Happy Valentine's Day" like a delicious cupcake from Blackbird Bakery, and that cupcake tastes even sweeter when it helps working, uninsured individuals access quality, compassionate, charitable health care.This year we're offering an opportunity for you to "Surprise a Senior" by anonymously sending a cupcake to someone in our local nursing homes or who is a shut-in. Won't you help brighten the day of someone who is often forgotten?This is also a great way to let teachers, nurses, administrative staff, etc. know how much you appreciate their hard work and dedication while supporting a worthy cause!Healing Hands Health Center is now accepting cupcake orders for our 5th Annual "Sweets for the Sweet" Cupcake Fundraiser! You may order via our website, by calling 423-573-4327 or stopping by our clinic!

New Art in The Nest at Blackbird Bakery

It's that time again, new art has been hatched in "The Nest at Blackbird Bakery". During the month of February, we are featuring a husband wife team, Neil Staples and Nina Rizzo. They are the local owners of studioBRISTOL, and they offer full service photography and fine arts. There will be a meet and greet with Neil and Nina at Blackbird Bakery this Friday Evening (February 6, 2015) from 06:00 pm — 08:00 pm. We hope to see you during the meet and greet!

Downtown Bristol Events

Blakley Leonard & the Folkups at Quaker Steak & Lube

February 6

Blakley Leonard & the Folkups will perform at Quaker Steak & Lube in downtown Bristol on Friday, February 6.

Dale Jett and Wayne Henderson at The Birthplace of Country Music Museum

February 6

Songs and Stories from A. P. Carter's Martin Guitar with Dale Jett and Wayne Henderson
Friday, February 6, 2015 at 7:00 p.m.
Performance Theater at Birthplace of Country Music Museum

In the 1930s, A. P. Carter bought a Martin 000-28 guitar to play on border radio from Mexico. A fancy guitar for the time, it is now considered one of the finest examples of the "golden age" of Martin production. That guitar was later handed down to A.P.'s grandson, Dale Jett and is currently on display in the museum's Carter Family exhibit, running through February 28. When a guitar of this caliber needs repair, Jett trusts friend and luthier Wayne Henderson to do the job. Songs and Stories is an intimate concert experience and rare occasion to hear A.P. Carter's guitar played by Jett and Henderson.

Cash bar will be available at the event. $25 per ticket, doors open at 6:00 p.m. Click here to purchase print-at-home tickets.

Lightwire at The Paramount Center for the Arts

February 6

The WINNERS of truTVs Fake Off and semifinalist from America's Got Talent will be performing one show only on Friday night at the Paramount Center for the Arts. This show is one to create so many memories with your children, grandchildren, or friends. This is going to be AMAZING! Purchase your tickets today.

Tickets Available

Call the Paramount Box Office
or online at

The Paramount Chamber Players to present Age of Elegance and Sensibility

February 20–22

The Paramount Chamber Players will be joined by nationally renowned violinist Tessa Lark, winner of the prestigious Naumberg International Violin Award in 2012. Tessa Lark is consistently praised by critics and audiences for her astounding range of sounds, technique and musical elegance.In this concert, TPCP celebrates an age of elegance and sensibility, a time frame roughly spanning the nineteenth century, when composers were interested in conveying emotional range in agraceful and sophisticated manner. The ensemble will present Brahms’ lyrical composition Piano Quartet in A Major, op. 26. Balancing this major work is seldom-heard Swedish composerBernhard Crusell’s Quartet for Clarinet and Strings op. 2, no. 1 and a set of songs for the cello and piano by Gabriel Fauré. Appearing in this concert are TPCP members Craig W. Combs, piano; Luis Casal, viola; Cherylonda Fitzgerald, cello; and Eugene Jones, clarinet.Performances are on Friday, February 20, 7:30 p.m. at First Presbyterian Church in Kingsport, TN; Saturday, February 21, 7:30 p.m. at The Paramount Center for the Arts in Bristol, TN; and on Sunday, February 22, 3:00 p.m. as part of the Spencer-Miller Memorial Concert Series at Sinking Spring Presbyterian Church in Abingdon, Va.

Tickets available at the door are $15 General Admission, $12 seniors, and students admitted free. On Saturday evening, tickets are also available through the Paramount Box Office 423-274-8920 or on line at Tickets for the Spencer-Miller Memorial Concert Series
performance on Sunday afternoon are available at the door for $10 adults, free for students.

OSHA 10-Hour Construction Course

February 23

Make certain your workers are up to date on safety standards before the busy season! Topics covered include Record Keeping; Focus Four — Falls, Electrocution, Struck by & Caught Between;Personal Protective & Life Saving Equipment; Health Hazards in Construction; Scaffolds; and Cranes, Derricks, Hoists, Elevators & Conveyors. Training supplied by the Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development.

The class is Feb. 23 from 8 a.m.-5:15 p.m. and Feb. 24 from 8 a.m.-noon in the Bristol Chamber of Commerce board room. Cost for Chamber members is $100 and $150 for non-members. Fees include all materials and lunch.

RSVP by Feb. 18. For more information or to register, Email Karen Witcher or call 423-989-4850.

Also Coming Up

More Upcoming Events »

Community Notice Board

Bristol Public Library Invites Community Members to Join Focus Groups on Adult Learning and Programming

January 20 – February 5

The Bristol Public Library is planning new programming for adults through the renovated Adult Learning Lab and a new creativity center. To better serve the community, the BPL is asking for community members to serve on focus groups about adult learning, lifelong learning, and adult programming. Focus groups are scheduled for January 20 through February 5 and will last approximately 90 minutes. Sessions will occur during morning, afternoon, evening, and weekend hours to make it most convenient for participants. Participants should be age 18 or older and willing to provide some demographic information such as age. A small thank you gift will be provided to participants.

Anyone interested in joining a focus group should contact Doris Stickley at or call 276-821-6148.

Prom Dress Drive and Sale at YWCA

January 27 – April 30

Clean out your closet and donate your old prom dresses, bridesmaids dresses, shoes, and accessories. Help deserving girls go to prom in style! Bristol Bridal Station is a program of YWCA Bristol that provides new, couture wedding gowns at affordable prices to women of all income levels. Through partnerships with bridal salons, we offer beautiful gowns up to 75% off retail value! We want every bride's experience to be one they remember — and can afford!

Proceeds support women, children and families in YWCA programs. Click here to learn more about our "Couture for a Cause." Giving back has never been easier!

Bristol Half & Half Marathon Needs Volunteers

January 28 – April 11

We need MANY volunteers to help make this event a success!

Positions Needed:
Course Marshals (must be 16 years of age)
Bicycle Riders
Set up and clean up for Virginia High and Tennessee High

If have questions or need more info, please call Susan Stout at 645-8844.

All volunteers must register on the website:

It’s not too early to sign up!!

Get Rewards When You Shop at Bristol Office Supply

February 4–1

Earn rewards when you shop on select ads at Bristol Office Supply!Follow the link to view the full ad.

Kil'n Time After Hours

February 4

Don't let Valentine's Day sneak up on you! Stop by for After Hours Wednesday night from 6 to 10, and we will have your piece back to you before the big day. Take 15% off all heart-shaped items!âªFor more information call(423) 573-9950.

Shop for Your Valentine at Pen's Floral

February 4–14

Make this Valentine's Day the most special ever with a gift from Pen's Floral. We are featuring the Teleflora "Heart Strings" roses and lilies vase, which includes a heart necklace, but can custom arrange any type of bouqet to suit that unique person in your life. For the finishing touch, let us add a tray of gourmet chocolate-dipped strawberries or decadent chocolate truffles. Call now to let us design your gift of love today! Call Pen's on 276-644-4600 or go to their website:

Bristol Ballet Presents Bows & Bow Ties 6th Annual Father Daughter Ball

February 8

Magic. Moments. Memories. And Twirling. Lots of Twirling.

Their first words. Their first steps. Their first break-up. It may sound cliché, but it all goes by so fast. Whether she’s 4 or 40, she’ll always be your little girl. You’ll always be the most important man in her life.The Bristol Ballet’s 6th annual Father Daughter Ball, themed “Bows & Bow Ties,” promotes healthy father daughter relationships and creates a tradition of memories to last a lifetime.
Dads should bring their little sweethearts to the Bristol Train Station on Sunday, February 8, 2015, 2:00 p.m. – 4:30 p.m., for sweets, treats, and dancing. >From Sinatra to Taylor Swift, DJ Express will spin a variety of appropriate hits both generations will enjoy. Reservations are $10 per person, call 276-669-6051.

Upcoming Bristol Public Library Committee Meetings

Feb. 11 and 12 / Feb 18 and 19

February 11: BPL Finance Committee 12 PM
February 12: BPL Programming Committee 4 PM
February 18: BPL Finance Committee 12 PM
February 19: BPL Board of Trustees Meeting 4:30 PM

Bristol Public Library
701 Goode Street, Bristol, VA 24201
Bristol Public Library
(276) 645-8780

Bristol Virginia to Host Anniversary Celebration

February 12

The city is throwing an anniversary party and the community is invited.
On Feb. 12, the city will host a community-wide celebration at the Bristol train station to observe the 125th anniversary of the town of Goodson changing its name and charter to become Bristol, according to a written statement.

At the anniversary celebration, retired Bristol, Virginia, Circuit Court Judge, Charles “Butch” Flannagan, will present a lecture about the early changes in the city’s charter, and how those changes have continued to impact the growth and governance for more than a century.
“Judge Flannagan is widely lauded as one of the leading experts on Southwest Virginia’s judicial history,” said Tim Buchanan, President of the Bristol Historical Association. “His presentation will be compelling, and will reveal much about the city’s history and the significance associated with those early days of collaboration that still define how both Bristols interact today."
Plans also include refreshments and a display of commemorative items. The first 100 people are to receive a pewter coin in honor of the anniversary, according to the statement.
A display about the city's history will also be available Feb. 17-March 7 at the Birthplace of Country Music Museum.